2015 Neil Ashmead Grand Tourer Shiraz
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First released from the 2008 vintage, the Grand Tourer Shiraz – a wine named after and produced in honour of Elderton co-founder, Neil Ashmead. Neil, who along with wife Lorraine, established Elderton and was a vital link in creating the Barossa’s currently enjoyed status as one of Australia’s most important viticultural areas. Infectious enthusiasm was one of Neil’s drivers in helping to pioneer the revitalisation of the region from the doom and gloom era of the late 70s and early 1980s.
Neil was a ‘Barossa Road Warrior’ like no other. Driving tirelessly from city to city with a car loaded with wine, doing tastings and dinners with whoever would listen, and generally spruiking the Barossa in a time where people were not really interested in a region that was stereotyped as a fortified producer. It was his love of fast cars that made this pursuit a little easier, thus the unusual choice for the name of this Shiraz. Unfortunately Neil passed away prematurely in 1997, however is succeeded by his two sons – Cameron and Allister, who believe this wine to be a very fitting tribute to an amazing individual who was always willing to push the boundaries of expectations and limitations.
|Vine Age||60 years|
|Soil||Deep alluvial silt over red and brown earths and limestone|
|Spacing||Vine spacing 1.5m, Row width 3m; North to South row direction|
|Yields||1-2 tonne per hectare|
|Maturation||New French puncheons, 15 months on gross lees|
94 points - Campbell Mattinson, The Wine Front, 8.3.17
The packaging has been finessed, and so too the wine. I loved the 2014 release. This 2015 release is a pearl too. It’s Barossa to its back teeth, all blackberried and coal-like with sweet, dry spices flowing through. What gives it an extra kick though is the wine’s meatiness, the run of anise, the gentle kiss of clovey oak, the feeling that it’s firm and powerful but that it’s not overdone; it’s authoritative but it doesn’t feel as though it’s trying too hard. In short, it’s a gorgeous Barossa shiraz.
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